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Discussion Starter #1
Couple of hours ago had Malwarebytes. Now I don't. Computer was locking up, so restarted it to see if that would help. It did, but now can't find Malwarebytes anywhere on it. Probably not searching in the wrong places, but it did tell me there was no link when I tried looking. I've been meaning to replace it for awhile not, just not finding anything suitable. Finally found one that seemed good, but wasn't able to connect to ask a couple of questions about a couple of things I wasn't sure about. Looks like I've got to speed up my search. Bah. Humbug.
 

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Steve
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That doesn't sound good - is it possible a virus has removed it?
I personally use AVG free or Avast, and as long as ignore their popup nags to try and sell me their paid-for product they work fine. I'm in I.T. at a high level, have always used AVG free and don't have any issues.

Malwarebytes do have a free option I think, but I tend to only use that product when I know I'm performing a cleanup on someon's computer.

Be a little cautious: there are some supposed antivirus products out there that are actually a scam and download more malware. Go for one of the "more well known" antivirus apps and you should be okay.

Hope that helps a little.

I suspect you should get something on there pretty fast and scan your computer, just in case.
 

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A computer guy recommended Kaspersky. Had it for fours years and worth the $$$. JOAT, sounds like a case of gremlins in the computer.
 

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Using McAfee LiveSafe and also Malwarebytes Premium for a number of years and they have keep things running safe and sound. I figure that for the few bucks a year it certainly is cheap peace of mind. IMHO
 

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It does sound like your computer is "under the influence". Download a program called Everything, it's the best search engine I've found and is free. https://www.voidtools.com/ I've used a number of AV programs over the years and was big fan of Norton until Norton was sold. It became way too aggressive and controlling causing more problems than not. If all you run is mainstream programs it will likely be fine but otherwise...Then I started using Panda until they didn't have a 64 bit version and switched to ESET which I have used for years. I have and use Malwarebytes as well as I have a lifetime license for 4 of my systems. I bought in early on and was rewarded for that when they went fully commercial. Between ESET and Malwarebytes I've had no issues. That said it's largely up to us and our habits as to how exposed we are. Good habits to get into are like not opening any attachments you're not expecting or from someone you don't know and/or have very suspicious names. If you get an attachment your AV software should be able to scan it prior to opening if you right mouse click on it and choose scan. There are a ton of scams posted every day like paying a past due bill and a link to make the payment online. If you hover over the provided URL (link) it will generally show you who it's from. Even then I don't open it as you can always log into your account for that service or whatever and see if you owe anything or were sent a notice. I mean this is low hanging fruit and very popular. If you fall for it remember they now have your payment info as well as personal info such as name /address/CC #.

But that's diving deep to start. Try going to an online scan service like ESET/Norton/Kaspersky to do an online scan. If you can't make that online connection to any of those you are probably infected with malicious software and it's blocking you. That could be loading prior to boot up and those are called root bots.
 

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Theo look in windows explorer. Click on your C drive and look in the folder Program Files Or Program Files (x86) and look down the list of folders for the Malwarebytes Anti-Malware folder. Click on that folder and look for the file mbam . It has the Malwarebytes icon next to it. If you click on it it will start the program. You can right click on it to select pin it to the start menu or simply pull it down to the task bar to pin it there for easy access.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It is/was Malwarebytes Premium. Seem to work fine. The real problems started awhile back when I tried Avast. Lots of hoopla, etc. Instead of speeding my computer up, it slowed it down dramatically. Started getting lots of problems that had been resolved long before. Started getting web pages slowing me down messages again, few and far between before. Started getting script running, and slowing me down, messages, a lot of them - and about 35+ percent of those were from Avast. Started getting pop up ads again, loads more of them than ever, on ever page. Cancelled Avast, and asked for a refund. They refused a refund, saying I was using a 30 day trial. Only after I forwarded them a copy of my receipt for payment did they refund my payment. Still getting web page slowing me down messages, but not daily anymore. And the computer locks up for minutes at a time now, didn't do that before Avast, but started mostly when Avast was installed.

You guys are making major errors. You assume I know what you are talking about. Not a clue where Windows Explorer is. Did a search, got instructions on where to find it, didn't work, tried several ways, none worked. Think I used to be able to find the start menu, not now. This thing was used, but reconditioned, when I got it, and always a bit strange. Would shift things around at time, the picture on the long in page gets changed about every 4th or 5th it boots up from scratch, sometimes oftener.

I was a lead computer operator for most of 9 years. Those big mainframes are nowhere as confusing as these PCs.
 

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There's no way I'd have a computer from someone else that hadn't been wiped and the operating system re-installed. It's a pain but well worth it and gets rid of tons of junk that is probably not even used these days on the system as is now. The 1st major issue would likely be the Registry which by now has probably bloomed way out of proportion. And don't think of using a Registry cleaner as they are just as likely to do more harm than good. If you want the speed back and a clean machine going the route of a clean Windows install is the way to go. Takes some time, you need the license information, and you'll likely not reinstall all your programs as a mess of them get installed, used a few times, and forgotten. Backup your documents, pictures, music, and videos which you should be doing anyway on a separate portable hard drive. I can't tell you how many people would come into the computer repair shop I used to work at after retiring that were scared to death because all their baby pictures, wedding pictures..you get the point, are on that failed drive. Sometimes we could recover some, sometimes all, but enough times none at all and their only option was to send the drive off for data recovery which is both very expensive and not guaranteed. That's work that is done at the platter level in a clean room. Not sure what, if anything, can be done with SSDs (solid state drives). Just saying. You want that system back to normal either see if you can do a reinstall yourself or get a quote from a repair shop.
 

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As some of you know, I have a small computer repair business and spend a lot of time chasing down viruses, Trojan Horses and malware. Every piece of software listed above with the exception of Everything (never of it) would not find it's way on my computers. With free software you get exactly what you pay for. Free Avast, Avg and Malwarebytes do nothing but give a false sense of security. Just because your free software scans and does not find anything wrong with your computer does not mean there isn't some kind item item out there that is infecting your computer. I have seen Macafee and Norton bring perfectly operating computer down to it's knees and hardly run at all because it thinks there is something wrong with the computer when actually nothing exists. There is a reason why the Federal Government stopped using Kaspersky.

The software I use is Trend Micro, I have been using it for 12 years without a problem. But I will not tell you to buy it. What you use for Antivirus/Trojan Horse/Malware is up to you. I have people use free Avast or AVG because they cannot afford anything else and I go repair their computers and wish them the best and if later on down the road they have more problems, I fix the computer again and leave it be.

I will tell you piece of software to purchase and that would be Windows Manager 7, 8.1, or 10. This software is sold by a company call Yamacsoft. The software is one of the best programs for getting rid of Junk Files, Duplicate Files, an extremely good registry cleaner and registry defrager it has several other features but I do not use these regularly. Thus is the first program that I run on any computer that I get for repair service and a good 70 percent of the time, this is all I need to run on a computer along with disk cleaner and disk defrag, to bring it back up and functioning 100%.

CAD-Man
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I've had Malwarebytes Premium (paid for) for about a year, with no issues. It was only after I got Avast (paid for) that I started having issues. Not as bad when I actually had Avast (about 2 weeks), but this is new. I think I might be finding out some info - remembered I had the emails from when I purchased the Malwarebytes Premium, and going thru those - tomorrow, going to bed now. Think I will be contacting their support too.
 

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If your license hasn't expired, then you should be able to re-install it (hopefully) without issues.

My advice - don't try running 2 products at once like MalwareBytes and Avast - they generally don't like to co-exist with another product.
I agree Nortons, and a few of the others definitely slow things down and are not worth purchasing.

In regards to advice on free programs: it's a horses for courses thing. Your mileage may vary. Mine has been a great run with AVG free, but I am also a tech and browse carefully. No product is 100% effective no matter what anyone says, as the threats keep changing.

If MalwareBytes has been your go-to product (and it is a good product in my opinion), then be comfortable getting it back in there doing its thing.

I'd offer to have a look remotely, but I suspect lining up our timezones would be a little tricky, depending on where you are and how it corresponds to Sydney time. But I am happy to provide whatever help I can otherwise too.
 

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Sorry Bruce, agree to disagree

As some of you know, I have a small computer repair business and spend a lot of time chasing down viruses, Trojan Horses and malware. Every piece of software listed above with the exception of Everything (never of it) would not find it's way on my computers. With free software you get exactly what you pay for. Free Avast, Avg and Malwarebytes do nothing but give a false sense of security. Just because your free software scans and does not find anything wrong with your computer does not mean there isn't some kind item item out there that is infecting your computer. I have seen Macafee and Norton bring perfectly operating computer down to it's knees and hardly run at all because it thinks there is something wrong with the computer when actually nothing exists. There is a reason why the Federal Government stopped using Kaspersky.

The software I use is Trend Micro, I have been using it for 12 years without a problem. But I will not tell you to buy it. What you use for Antivirus/Trojan Horse/Malware is up to you. I have people use free Avast or AVG because they cannot afford anything else and I go repair their computers and wish them the best and if later on down the road they have more problems, I fix the computer again and leave it be.

I will tell you piece of software to purchase and that would be Windows Manager 7, 8.1, or 10. This software is sold by a company call Yamacsoft. The software is one of the best programs for getting rid of Junk Files, Duplicate Files, an extremely good registry cleaner and registry defrager it has several other features but I do not use these regularly. Thus is the first program that I run on any computer that I get for repair service and a good 70 percent of the time, this is all I need to run on a computer along with disk cleaner and disk defrag, to bring it back up and functioning 100%.

CAD-Man
Paid-for antivirus applications are not really much better than the free ones. You can have a paid-for product, think you're sweet and still have gremlins just the same. I have seen it happen many times. If you use Trend Micro and have had a good run from it, that's great, but in this day and age any product can only give you a certain level of comfort.

Often, it comes down to a combination of how and what you browse for and what companies might have been targeted for drive-by malware.

I'd also recommend CCleaner for junk removal and registry cleanup - again a free product, but recommended by many reputable organisations.

Defragging the registry won't help in a virus situation, and only makes a minor improvement (if any) to the speed of a computer. Getting rid of unwanted junk is important as how full a disk is will affect speed, defragging the drive can help, but modern operating systems tend to do this in the background anyway so can come down to how your preferred product does it vs how say Microsoft prefer to do it - again, personal preference applies.

But back to the topic at hand, JOAT I second the opinion to use one of the online scanners if you cannot get MalwareBytes to reinstall - there could well be something blocking the installation.
 

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Since Windows 8, I've used Windows Defender, and have found it to work very well. Not nearly as resource hungry or intrusive as any of the others, and it's free.
 

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Interesting post Bruce. I can't say I've ever heard or seen Yamicsoft" Windows Manager but that doesn't mean anything considering the number of programs there are out there. What has been not mentioned is one of the prime reasons for virus and malware attacks. The biggest deterrent to these attacks is the user themselves. The websites that are frequented such as free pirated programs, movies, and music sites not to mention gambling and adult entertainment (very loose translation on adult), OK I'll just say it, porn, are very likely to give you way more than you ever hoped for. I think it's often referred to as "just rewards". Where you go on the internet and what you do has the biggest effect on what can happen. That's not to say you can't be lured to a site and attacked where it seemed perfectly normal but that's where your AV software should protect you and malware can be transferred and imbedded into programs as is often with those "free" programs. I know CCleaner will bundle a AV program and I want to say it's Avast but clearly can't remember but on the computer for the remote telescope in California that belongs to a friend of mine and I run, when CCleaner was installed as is on mine at home it also installed a free version of this AV which was never indicated or asked permission. That install had some side effects that took me a while to see and understand. It also was a search on how to uninstall that AV program and ended up being a multistep process. While I love CCleaner it clearly installed a not wanted program/process.

As for Everything, I'd give it a hard look for its ability to extremely quickly find files on very large systems. I have 7 hard drives installed, mostly for the telescope data, minimum 1TB and up, 3 of which are SSDs. There's a ton of data and while I try to be organized there are times files get placed in the wrong location due to a mistake on my part. This program finds them in record time. While it is free there is a place to donate and support the programmer. As for packaged AV, I prefer to choose my AV and then my malware protection separately. As I mentioned before Malwarebytes has always been my goto program and enabling Windows Defender is additional protection Seems AV softwares are rated primarily on their packaged software (suites) and that's somewhat distracting. My number one priority with an AV software is virus protection not it's other bells and whistles. Fine if they excel at all but if they are only good at virus and excellent otherwise I'll pass. I want excellent at virus protection and excellent at malware protection and that may well mean two separate programs which is fine with me.

That said, nothing beats a clean install of a system. It's the most time consuming but well worth is. When I build a computer for these observatories I always make a full backup (image) of the original install which if/when needed cust the time considerably. You'll need to install the additional programs that were installed over time and Windows updates but the bulk of the work is already done in the imaged hard drive copy. Lets face it, you can but SSDs for less than some router bit sets like a cope and stile. Just saying and done.......
 

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Since Windows 8, I've used Windows Defender, and have found it to work very well. Not nearly as resource hungry or intrusive as any of the others, and it's free.
Not really "free" as the cost is included in the OS but yes, no additional cost. And it isn't that bad but again you are the biggest factor in your browsing/downloading habits.
 

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The biggest deterrent to these attacks is the user themselves. The websites that are frequented such as free pirated programs, movies, and music sites not to mention gambling and adult entertainment (very loose translation on adult), OK I'll just say it, porn, are very likely to give you way more than you ever hoped for.
+1
If you see Windows popping up on their own, you're in dangerous waters. Close them quick, along with the page that they came from.
 

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"You guys are making major errors. You assume I know what you are talking about. Not a clue where Windows Explorer is. Did a search, got instructions on where to find it, didn't work, tried several ways, none worked."

Are you using a PC or Apple? If a PC are you using Windows10?
 

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Paid-for antivirus applications are not really much better than the free ones. You can have a paid-for product, think you're sweet and still have gremlins just the same. I have seen it happen many times. If you use Trend Micro and have had a good run from it, that's great, but in this day and age any product can only give you a certain level of comfort.

Often, it comes down to a combination of how and what you browse for and what companies might have been targeted for drive-by malware.

I'd also recommend CCleaner for junk removal and registry cleanup - again a free product, but recommended by many reputable organisations.

Defragging the registry won't help in a virus situation, and only makes a minor improvement (if any) to the speed of a computer. Getting rid of unwanted junk is important as how full a disk is will affect speed, defragging the drive can help, but modern operating systems tend to do this in the background anyway so can come down to how your preferred product does it vs how say Microsoft prefer to do it - again, personal preference applies.

But back to the topic at hand, JOAT I second the opinion to use one of the online scanners if you cannot get MalwareBytes to reinstall - there could well be something blocking the installation.
As you said, to each his own on what group of software packages. What I wrote was based on 13 years of my own computer repair service and 30 plus years in the computer industry in Silicone Valley. I have 12 years as system administrator on Apollo, HP, Sun Micro System ad PC computers. I also reviewed and implemented various CAD and CAE systems as well as being an end user of all of the CAD/CAE software.

If free gives you the protection you desire then all I can say is go for it. This why I stated in my first post that I will not recommend Trend Micro because what I find to work and I'm willing to pay the price. Others may not want to pay for this software. In the 12 years I have never had Malware, Virus, or Trojan in any of the 10 computers I have at my house or have any of my customers that have chosen Trend Micro. I will mention this, most of the people I have had to repair their computers from viruses have been using the free version of AVG. But in the defense of AVG most of these customers have chosen not to keep AVG up to date with updates recommended by AVG.

I think you might have missed what I was saying about Windows Manager 7, 8.1, or 10 it does a Registry Clean up before Defrag of the Registry. The clean up find any bad pointers to programs that no longer exist on the hard drive. I install and uninstall a lot of programs on my computers and the uninstall always leaves some kind of pointers in the registry. When booting the machine the registry looks at certain pointers if it cant find a program that is from an old pointer in the registry it slows down the boot process. Unfortunately when either booting or starting a program the registry is used for locating all of the parts of the program. Ever time that happens it starts at the top of the registry if the registry file is large with a lot of bad pointers it slows down everything. Editing a registry is a difficult and dangerous thing to do, that is why I rely on the Registry Cleaner in Windows Manager to do the job for me.

CAD-Man
 

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Hi Bruce - please don't misunderstand my differing opinion as an attack on your credentials. I too have been in the computer industry for 30 odd years and have qualifications. It's not personal. I'm sorry if that offended you.

However I did want to point out that free antivirus is a fair option and that paid products don't guarantee anything either. I have never had an infection under AVG free.

I didn't miss your point on Windows Manager, it's a useful product, I merely proffered another solution and opinion - take it or leave it.


JOAT, how did you get on with MalwareBytes? Is it installed/reinstalled/running?
 
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